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 First Koolhaas Tower Approved For London

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Adolescant Doomster
Adolescant Doomster

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PostSubject: First Koolhaas Tower Approved For London   First Koolhaas Tower Approved For London I_icon_minitimeSat Dec 04, 2010 6:02 am

First Koolhaas Tower Approved For London

Rem Koolhaas's first building of any significance in London, a new headquarters for venerable merchant bank, Rothschild, has been approved in the City of London.

The 14 floor block called New Court will reach 70 metres in height, contain 20,992 square metres of space, and prove prominent in sitting in-front of the growing City of London cluster when viewed from Waterloo.

It can be described as almost typical Koolhaas in design. The architect commonly uses a series of blocks to dictate the form of the buildings he plans, stacking them and having them slightly offset from centre. This is very much the case with New Court that continues the Koolhaas reinvention of the international style office block as a cluster of cubes rather than a single form.

Drawing from the International style however, New Court will be clad largely in glazed panels, that will appear even in the front of blind walls. Metallic detail is added in the form of mesh panels, louvres and aluminium panels which combined with the glass will create the conservative look you'd expect from such a bank. The only external stone used will be on one of the roof terraces.

The top of the building in particular will appear at the front of the skyline, something the architect has taken into account in making the top floors into what is effectively a private viewing platform for employees of Rothschild and anyone lucky enough to visit their headquarters, an approach perhaps inspired by the restaurant at the top of the Gherkin.

New Court has been designed with Koolhaas's firm OMA, executive architects, Allies and Morrison, in tow and Stanhope helping out on the development front. Arup Associates are the structural engineers.

Rothschild are said to want the scheme completed in time for their 200th anniversary in 2009. It seems almost unbelievable to think that when they first arrived in London and have been on the same site ever since. Wellington was busy fighting Napoleon on the Iberian Peninsula and it can't help but make you wonder what Rothschild's headquarters will be like in another 200 years time.

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